Obama's brain project 奥巴马的大脑计划
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美国总统奥巴马最近斥资一亿美元发起了一项旨在研究人类大脑所蕴藏的“巨大奥妙”的科研计划。奥巴马总统希望这一“大脑计划”能够帮助世人了解和学习到人类大脑的运转方式以及一些如老年痴呆等不同的脑部疾病。BBC 记者 Paul Adams 从美国华盛顿报道：
The president's advisors call the BRAIN project ambitious, even audacious. It aims to produce dynamic pictures of the brain that show, in the words of a White House statement, how individual cells and complex neural circuits interact at the speed of thought. Announcing the programme, Barack Obama said humans could identify distant galaxies and study subatomic particles, but still had a limited understanding of the brain.
"There's this enormous mystery waiting to be unlocked. The BRAIN Initiative will change that by giving scientists the tools they need to get a dynamic picture of the brain in action and better understand how we think and how we learn and how we remember."
That knowledge, he said, would be transformative: families no longer helpless at the onset of Parkinson's, and war veterans able to reverse the effects of traumatic brain injury. The administration reckons it costs around $500bn a year to treat the various conditions this project hopes to address. It believes that technological advances, in data processing and revolutionary new techniques like optogenetics mean that, for the first time, this hugely ambitious research is actually possible.